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Earth

"Argonaut" Octopus Sucks Air Into Shell As Ballast 72

Posted by timothy
from the 8-legs-good dept.
audiovideodisco writes "Even among octopuses, the Argonaut must be one of the coolest. It gets its nickname — 'paper nautilus' — from the fragile shell the female assembles around herself after mating with the tiny male (whose tentacle/penis breaks off and remains in the female). For millennia, people have wondered what the shell was for; Aristotle thought the octopus used it as a boat and its tentacles as oars and sails. Now scientists who managed to study Argonauts in the wild confirm a different hypothesis: that the octopus sucks air into its shell and uses it for ballast as it weaves its way through the ocean like a tiny submarine. The researchers' beautiful video and photographs show just how the Argonaut pulls off this trick. The regular (non-paper) nautilus also uses its shell for ballast, but the distant relationship between it and all octopuses suggests this is a case of convergent evolution."
Power

Is RCA's Airnergy Snake Oil? 271

Posted by kdawson
from the deepness-in-the-sky dept.
Ben Newman writes "Of all the tech that's come out of CES this week, nothing has gotten the blogosphere more excited then the RCA Airnergy. A lot of people love the thought of an ever-recharging cell phone, and the Airnergy promises to constantly charge its internal battery through 2.4GHz wireless signals. Neat idea, but as some commenters have pointed out the energy just isn't there to make this work — BOTECs for a full charge range from 100 days to 32 years. Plus, don't let the RCA brand fool you into thinking this must be from a legitimate company: RCA hasn't existed as anything more then a licensed brand name for a couple of decades. So what do Slashdotters think — real deal or 21st century hokum?"

Comment: Re:Virtualization (Score 2, Informative) 328

by AdmiralXyz (#29879555) Attached to: Psystar's Rebel EFI Hackintosh Tool Reviewed, Found Wanting
Don't count on it. The problem with virtualization is that it requires the virtualized OS to be as cooperative to the whole affair as possible, since it needs to be fooled into thinking it has unfettered access to the system, which in many ways is much harder than just getting the OS to run natively on the hardware. Windows and Linux are becoming more virtualization-friendly every day since their developers have realized that their operating systems are being virtualized on a regular basis, but since there is no Apple-approved way to virtualize OS X, it would be a fairly trivial matter for them to make it as unfriendly to virtualize as possible. If that doesn't sound like such a big deal, consider how many strange bugs there are in VMs where the virtualized operating system is TRYING to make it as easier on the VM.

Is Apple doing this at the moment? Probably not. Would they if they saw OS X virtualization becoming widespread against their will? Of course no one can say for sure, but I don't think anyone would put it past them either.
It's funny.  Laugh.

+ - Male Science Students Least Sexually Active

Submitted by Thib
Thib (730259) writes "A study at the University of Sydney published in the Journal Sexual Health and featured not without humor by PhysOrg confirms it: "Female arts students at university are the most sexually active while male science students are the most likely to be virgins", a conclusion which I'm sure will come as no surprise to Slashdotters worldwide. The study was actually about chlamydia awareness among university students aged 18 to 25."
Social Networks

+ - Facebook under Fire over Breastfeeding Photos-> 4

Submitted by
NewsCloud
NewsCloud writes "Facebook continues to struggle with when to enforce its own terms of service. While the 78,240 group members who want Facebook to shut down the F*** Islam group are still frustrated, those concerned with photos of breastfeeding mothers can rest more easily. The site has recently come under fire for removing pictures of breastfeeding mothers, and banning users on the grounds that they'd uploaded "obscene content" to their profiles. Says Facebook, "Photos containing an exposed breast do violate our Terms and are removed." In response, more than 33,431 concerned Facebook users have created the "Hey, Facebook, breastfeeding is not obscene!" group. Apparently, scantily clad college co-eds, fine and dandy."
Link to Original Source
Sci-Fi

+ - Heinlein archives to go online->

Submitted by
RaymondRuptime
RaymondRuptime writes "Good news for fans of the late SF master Robert Heinlen, 2 months after his 100th birthday celebration. Per the San Jose Mercury News, "The entire contents of the Robert A. and Virginia Heinlein Archive — housed in the UC-Santa Cruz Library's Special Collections since 1968 — have been scanned in an effort to preserve the contents digitally while making the collection easily available to both academics and the general public... The first collection released includes 106,000 pages, consisting of Heinlein's complete manuscripts — including files of all his published works, notes, research, early drafts and edits of manuscripts." You can skip the brief article and go straight to the archives."
Link to Original Source
Networking

+ - Terrorists are like Starfish (?)->

Submitted by
Mark D. Drapeau
Mark D. Drapeau writes "Could biological metaphors about networking and systems shed light on one of the most difficult issues of our time — terrorism? According to a new op-ed in the 31 July 2007 Washington Times, and a new book entitled The Starfish and the Spider, the answer is a resounding "Yes". An excerpt from the op-ed reads: *** Most large institutions are organized hierarchically with centralized leadership. Corporations have CEOs, armies have generals, countries have presidents. When competing against centralized organizations, promoting diffusion and disrupting cohesion are considered progressive. However, al Qaeda has a constantly mutating, horizontal structure composed of an inspirational catalyst in the form of Osama bin Laden and other central figures joined with numerous small groups brought together not by orders but ideology. Here, lack of structure is a strength. Little thought is given, however, to how such a decentralized terrorist network structure affects the strategy for combating it. "The Starfish and the Spider," a new book about corporate strategy written for a business audience, has a wider application — combating terrorism — and sheds light on this issue.*** Read more here: http://washingtontimes.com/article/20070731/COMMEN TARY/107310009/1012 And here: http://www.starfishandspider.com/"
Link to Original Source
Slashdot.org

Introducing the Slashdot Firehose 320

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the who-wants-to-drink-from-the-firehose dept.
Logged in users have noticed for some time the request to drink from the Slashdot Firehose. Well now we're ready to start having everybody test it out. It's partially a collaborative news system, partially a redesigned & dynamic next-generation Slashdot index. It's got a lot of really cool features, and a lot of equally annoying new problems for us to find and fix for the next few weeks. I've attached a rough draft of the FAQ to the end of this article. A quick read of it will probably answer most questions from how it works, what all the color codes mean, to what we intend to do with it.
The Almighty Buck

+ - Is Coal (Yes, Coal) the Next Hot Technology?

Submitted by nlseaver
nlseaver (1066860) writes "From a greenhouse gas perspective, coal is one of our dirtiest sources of energy. It's also widely available and cheap, and so it will continue to be a critical source of energy in the twenty-first century. Despite hopes for "clean coal" technology, no clear solution has emerged. Furthermore, because no policy framework (like a carbon tax or incentives to invest in clean technology) yet exists, coal companies are putting into place long-lived "dirty" coal facilities. As the article states: "Within the next few years, power companies are planning to build about 150 coal plants to meet growing electricity demands. Despite expectations that global warming rules are coming, almost none of the plants will be built to capture the thousands of tons of carbon dioxide that burning coal spews into the atmosphere." http://select.nytimes.com/mem/tnt.html?emc=tnt&tnt get=2007/02/21/business/21coal.html&tntemail1=y"

Uncertain fortune is thoroughly mastered by the equity of the calculation. - Blaise Pascal

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